Archive for July, 2016


July 20, 2016

I can no longer run,

my knees don’t allow it,

if I ignore them,


they knock me down.

Callouses grow in the strangest places,

on the bottom of my toe,

near the ever-larger bunyon

and the curving hammer-toe,

I sometimes stare at my own hands,

with their brown age spots

and rivers of veins,

A walk in the park is exercise,

I enjoy a mile or two.

I want to age,  gracefully,

enjoying the time I’m given,

My experience makes me who I am,

each day a gift from heaven,

My life is ages, and stages of trials,

with twists and turns unforeseen,

The beauty of life is appreciated,

the more age intervenes.

cfblack  7-20-2016  






Our son named Jamal

July 16, 2016

Our oldest son’s name is Jamal. The quick way to explain it is, our religion is global. It is literally worldwide but its roots, where it started, was Iran. Baha’is have always been persecuted in Iran because for one thing, they came after Muhammed. Secondly, some of the main principles of the Faith are things like equality of men and women; science and religion go hand in hand; and the essential oneness of all major religions under one God. These principles are not often supported by the current government of Iran. Jamal is a beautiful name meaning beauty but is a man’s name. We called our son “Jamie” until he was 7 years old when he announced, “My name is Jamal” and that was that. In TODAY’S climate, he has been assumed to be black, or Arabic, neither of which helps him to land a big job in Milwaukee (the most racially divided city in America). It has been suggested to him by well-meaning business associates that he should change his name to “Jim Hall”. Recently, a neighbor asked Jamal & his wife “if he practiced Shariah law”. And frankly, well-meaning African Americans have asked me, “Why does your son have a black name?” It’s not a black name, it is an Arabic name & we just happened to like it. It is a very masculine name, if you are global-minded. In high school his soccer team nickname was Jamal (he’s not) Black. This was printed onto the back of his soccer t-shirt. Our youngest son’s name is LEVIN. It’s Russian & comes from the book ANNA KARENINA. No religious significance whatsoever. A black graduate student once started laughing hysterically when I told him my son’s name. He said, “OMG do you know what you’ve done to him? Employers will assume he’s either black or Muslim.” I say, “Let your vision be world embracing and not confined to your own selves.”— Baha’i writings.

Close to the end

July 16, 2016

It is close, or much closer, to the end of this journey with my husband through recovery from surgery and resulting infection. He still has probably weeks or months before he is walking but he improves every day. Being of service to others is a special gift. Sometimes we have to think, “What could I do for someone today?” I realized yesterday that this journey has placed me in a perpetual state of service. I in no way uphold women being subservient to men, that is another whole ball game. But being of service to others in this life is something we should all strive for. Helping our fellow human beings.

This journey placed me

in perpetual service,

through the grace of God.

cfblack   7-15-2016



Of What Value is a Life?

July 9, 2016

Eric Garner couldn’t breathe,

You didn’t notice he was dying,


Tamir Rice was a 12-year-old boy,

You didn’t notice he was playing,


Freddie Gray’s back was broken and bruised,

But you didn’t hear his screams,


Trayvon was walking home from the store,

You saw him as an intruder,


Amadou was reaching for his wallet,

You decided that he had a gun,


Anthony Baez was playing football,

You strangled him in a choke hold,


Michael Brown ran toward you in a threatening way,

You shot him, then left his body lay,


Walter Scott was running away from your car,

You shot him in the back,


Philando obeyed you at a traffic stop,

You shot him in front of a child,


Alton was tackled and unarmed,

You raised your gun and fired,


Of what value is a human life?

The most precious of all things,

Once you take it, it is gone,

Never to return,


The question is NOT “was his death legal?”

The question is, “was it preventable?”


WORK to de-escalate a situation,

Not jump in like it’s a war zone,


VALUE each life for what it is,

See the person in front of you, as one of your own.


cfblack                  7-08-2016

2 from a few days ago

July 8, 2016

Teeming life on earth,
All attempts to stifle it
Overcome with hope.


Thousands of life forms
Squirrels, cicadas, lizards, birds,
Back porch witnessing.



We mourn the fallen

July 8, 2016


We mourn the fallen,

Violence leaves an emptiness,

only filled by love.